NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE -We’ve talked many times about the importance of creating quality content for SEO. Google loves frequent content, and your users love relevant, helpful information. I’ve even discussed different types of blog posts you can use to trigger your content creation.
Within each specific post, you should also try to include several keywords that can increase your rank on Google. Here we’ll discuss some common tools to help you conduct your own keyword research. Your SEO copywriting can be greatly improved with a little keyword research before you write.
Thinking comes first. Make a list of keywords that are importance to your business. Think of phrases your potential customers might search for. What are some phrases for which you hope to rank on Google?
Now that you have some phrases to start from, you can begin to research the competition these keywords have. Analyzing your keywords’ competition means looking at how many other sites are ranking for these exact keywords. Finding a keyword with lower competition means not as many sites rank for that keyword. Your website could benefit from using a keyword with low or medium competition over a keyword with high competition. Sometimes even a slight tweak in your keyword phrase can lower its competition.
Google AdWords Keyword Tool
Let’s take the keyword “freelance writing” and enter it into the Google AdWords Keyword Tool. When you click “search” you’ll see that our keyword is categorized as High Competition with 135,000 global searches a month. The phrase “freelance writing gigs” is a Low Competition keyword with 1,900 global monthly searches. The phrase “freelance travel writing” is a Medium Competition keyword. Try to add a word to make your High Competition keyword more specific so that it is either a Medium or a Low Competition keyword. This will increase your chances of getting noticed in the mass of other High Competition searches.
The website Übersuggest has a fitting tagline: suggest on steroids. This keyword generator tool allows users to enter in a word or phrase, the language you speak and the source. It’s simple to use. Once you type in your keyword, click “suggest” and watch a long list of similar keywords pop up. This keyword tool gathers keyword suggestions from real user queries. I typed in “freelance writing,” and some of the suggested keywords are: freelance writing jobs, freelance writing gigs, freelance writing rates, freelance writing and taxes, and freelance writing courses. The list includes keywords that spawn off of your original keyword, so you should have oodles of topics sparked from these queries. Übersuggest doesn’t give much information on the keywords’ competition, but you can find that using Google’s Tool mentioned above.
Soolve is an interesting keyword suggestion tool. The website shows users what queries are popular on loads of sites. Take a minute to check out Soolve. You’ll notice the homepage has a query bar in the center with multiple icons hovering around the edges. You’ll see logos from Google, Bing, Netflix, Amazon, Yahoo!, eBay, YouTube, Wikipedia and more. You should see even more logos beneath the search bar, which allow you to customize your search.
Once you type in a query, let’s use “freelance writing” again, you’ll see keyword suggestions pop up in real time over each of the logos. Google added words like “jobs,” “gigs,” “rates” and specific locations to our keyword. Amazon yielded keywords such as “freelance writing for dummies,” “freelance writing guide,” “freelance writing business” and “freelance writing for magazines.”
Don’t Hit Enter
Chris Richards shares some good keyword research advice from SEER Interactive founder Wil Reynolds imparted during an SEO event in July.
“He noticed that he’s become cautious when typing into Google now, instead of rushing to get results that are biased by his own keyword search,” Richards writes of Reynolds. “Instead, the DON’T HIT ENTER rule implies that you’ll take your time typing and let Google auto-fill the results box. This way, you can see what most people are searching for and use it to base your content around.”
Personally I am excited to test out the “Don’t Hit Enter” rule in my own keyword research. Google already tries to guess what you’re typing by using other popular queries. How cool is that?
Do you conduct any keyword research before you write a new post? How do you continue to generate ideas relevant to your industry? What keyword tools work for you?